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Library Guide for Staff: Library Resourcing

Each academic College/Department appoints a Library Liaison Officer (LLO), who acts as the main contact between the College/Department and the Library.

One of the LLO's main roles is to authorise and monitor book ordering and by the department.

Although the Library orders most material for the departments the budget for books and DVDs is held by the College. 



To request a book:


  • Send full details (author, title, edition, publisher, ISBN and price) to your Library Liaison Officer, who will then pass them on to our Resource Development team. 
  • Where possible we prefer to buy electronic versions of books to ensure that more people can use them, wherever and whenever they choose to. The Library's Collection Development Policy outlines agreed principles for the development and management of the University's print and electronic collections.
  • Orders are placed with our regular suppliers, who provide discounts and process items so that they are shelf-ready. 
  • Please allow several weeks for books and other resources to arrive from the suppliers. 
  • Please be aware that rare or foreign books/DVDs or out of print items can take longer to arrive.

E-book guide 

Practices for allocating budgets and resource ordering can vary from College to College. Please contact your LLO to find out the correct procedure in your College/Department.

The High Demand collection includes material which is needed by many students over a short period of time. Items in the collection might include print booksprint journals or DVDs. Only one copy of a title is normally held in this collection.

These items:

  • may only be borrowed for 2 day periods or weekends to ensure maximum availability.
  • cannot be reserved in advance and may not be renewed.

The Collection is shelved alongside the entrance to the Forum Library; there is a similar collection in St Luke's Library and Penryn Campus Library.  

In the first instance, the library will try to obtain electronic content or multiple copies on standard loan, rather than place items in the High Demand collection, in order to maximise their use by students. 

However, out of print or difficult to obtain items which are highly used can be placed in the High Demand collection so that they can be shared fairly between students.

Please discuss your High Demand requests with the Library Liaison Team .

   Subscriptions to journals, databases and other ongoing commitments are purchased via an institutional budget administered by the library.

Proposals for new subscriptions are welcomed from all teaching and research staff at the University.

Requests can be made by completing the online request form .


Subscription resources have been subject to above inflation price increases over a number of years, meaning that there are significant budget pressures in this area. Therefore it will not be possible to purchase all new requested resources and in some cases it may be necessary to cancel existing subscriptions in order to divert budget to new resources. All requests are scrutinized in terms of budgetary impact and added value they bring to the University.

Please read the guidelines for proposing new subscriptions before submitting a request.


You will need to be aware of the supporting case requirements prior to making a request.


We consider such information under two headings:

  • Educational impact and strategy, e.g. how does the resource contribute to the University’s educational strategy? How much impact will it have on current students?
  • Research impact and strategy, e.g. how does the resource contribute to the University’s research strategy? How will it contribute to current research?


What happens once a request has been submitted?


  • Requests are added to a wishlist for consideration by the library.
  • Liaison librarians meet monthly to review requests for titles costing under £1000 and to make purchase decisions as resources allow.
  • Larger items costing over £1000 are considered annually, in March. All requests must be submitted no later than 31st of January to be eligible for consideration at the March Review meeting.


If proposals are approved, but funds are not currently available, the resources will remain on the wishlist and will be re-evaluated if funding is released.

Please be aware that if your request is successful there is often a delay between approval and access to a resource becoming available. The Library will advise you in due course about your request.

If we do not stock a particular book or subscribe to a journal from which you need an article, you may be able to obtain the item from our Document Delivery (Inter-Library Loans) service. 

Each department pays for its own loans – ask your Library Liaison Officer for information on who administers the tokens in your department. Alternatively, you can pay for the request yourself. 

Full details of the service are available at:


An ISBN is a unique 13 digit number, assigned to a book or similar publication. It denotes the publisher and edition of the book and allows booksellers and purchasers to identify exact versions of a publication. ISBNs are usually only available to purchase in batches of 10 or more. However, for information on obtaining a single ISBN for your publication from the University of Exeter, please contact Phil Hicks. Further information on getting ISBNs can be found on the Nielsen UK ISBN Agency website.



An ISSN is a unique 8 digit number, assigned to a serial publication (e.g. a journal, magazine or electronic journal). It acts as an identifier and allows potential subscribers and readers to locate the exact publication required. To obtain an ISSN for your serial publication, you need to contact the British Library directly. For more details, see the British Library website.

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